In November 2012, Johnson County Mental Health Center (JCMHC) hosted a Suicide Prevention Summit gathering over 150 community partners to discuss the alarmingly increasing rates of suicide in our community. Representatives of diverse sectors including healthcare, education, law enforcement, local government etc. participated in round table discussions regarding current conditions and brainstorming next steps in local prevention strategies.
Information was compiled from the dialogue of diverse representatives and presented to focus groups in March 2013 to analyze and drill down to specific goals and strategies. Focus groups referenced the 2012 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention: Goals and Objectives for Action Surgeon General's report. Participants narrowed down the thirteen goals prepared in this report to the top three priorities for our community.
- Implement research-informed communication efforts designed to prevent suicide by changing knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors.
- Provide training to community and clinical service providers on the prevention of suicide and related behaviors.
- Promote suicide prevention as a core component of health care services.
In May 2013, JCMHC hosted a Key Leader event with CEO's, Presidents, Managers, etc. of local organizations to present findings and establish support for next steps in a local suicide prevention plan.
Three workgroups were formed based on feedback from community participants and the 2012 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention. Over 70 community members signed up to participate in one of the three workgroups. In June 2013, workgroups had their first meeting and created priority objectives.
In November 2013, community leaders were invited back to the Johnson County Suicide Prevention Update. This was an opportunity to celebrate the progress and accomplishments of the newly formed Johnson County Suicide Prevention Coalition.